A Benefit for Second Harvest Food Bank of Middle Tennessee
The Beatles vs. The Rolling Stones Charity Christmas Bowl
A half-century after the mid-’60s British Invasion, the Beatles vs. Stones debate rages on. In case rock fans are still keeping score, Paul McCartney sure upstaged The Rolling Stones at last week’s 12-12-12 Hurricane Sandy telethon at Madison Square Garden. The Stones played for 10 minutes; Macca reunited Nirvana, spellbound viewers nationwide with a tender, touching “Blackbird,” and threw in a Wings deep cut or two for good gutsy measure. For the fourth year in a row, and for two nights in a row, a top-notch lineup of local rockers will celebrate The Mop Tops and Glimmer Twins’ faux rivalry in song form at The Basement, with proceeds going to benefit Second Harvest Food Bank of Middle Tennessee. Like last week’s Sandy Benefit, this pair is stacked with stellar performs. The bill boasts Langhorne Slim, Cory Branan, Courtney Jaye, Derek Hoke, Mike Farris, Matt Friction, The Weeks, Mayhem, Magnolia Sons and more.
Nashville TN |
Mike Younger is the product of a journey along the road less traveled. His music and persona are unique and noteworthy for the breadth of styles and genres they touch upon as well as the content behind them.
Having been exposed to and inspired by some of the milestone artists that defined the rock and roll era of the fifties, sixties and seventies he was determined to dig deeper into the history and roots of these musical forms.
At the age of seventeen Younger took to the road, traveling by thumb, rail, shoestring, bus etc. Though his origins lead back to eastern Canada, his musical journey has passed through many towns and cities....his stages have been piers, sidewalks, doorways, town squares, coffee shops, bars, saloons, joints, nightclubs and theaters. He has never performed on American Idol and never will.
Nashville TN | Americana
Derek Hoke has crafted a collection of equally endearing and infectious songs for his long awaited sophomore release – Waiting All Night. Out August 21, 2012 on Electric Western / Thirty Tigers, Waiting All Night picks up right where Hoke left off with his first release Goodbye Rock N Roll. There is a significant difference here though. If Goodbye Rock N Roll was slow crafted, simmered in Hoke’s brain on low, and came to life on a lazy saw dust floor one night in town, then Waiting All Night was born under the lights on stage. It’s clear that Hoke and his band have been affected by the past years of playing week after week. Nashville has a way of doing that to a singer. A way of molding a voice around the lingering smoke and whiskey hanging in the air night after night. And first and foremost, Derek Hoke is a singer. The songs, even the ballads, reach out and yearn for a late night in a dark room. It’s the same feeling you get when you leave the house at 2am to catch last call…because if you don’t you might miss something. You might miss the steel guitar or meandering piano solos and telecaster riffs. Well, get out of the house, because you won’t want to miss a tune on Waiting All Night.
"Courtney Jaye's wonderful throwback voice makes for splendid grooves. In a business where you don't think there are any more authentic crooners left, you stumble across a record like this & have faith that the tradition will be carried on. "Box Wine" has become a theme song of mine when thirsty and looking for haziness. Courtney Jaye is a talented recording artist with real style, class & talent. Unlike most of the jerkoffs in her business. I so adore this record."
With songs that take their cues from '60s pop and Hawaiian folk, The Exotic Sounds of Courtney Jaye falls somewhere between the sock hop and the luau. There's a bit of countrypolitan twang thrown into the mix, too, a product of Jaye's time spent in Nashville, and the album's biggest asset is its ability to jump between cultures with each tune, evoking tropical living one minute and Southern bar culture the next. Tying the disparate package together is Jaye herself, the sort of unsung musical hero who regularly wins the approval of her indie cohorts (Neal Casal, Ryan Adams' guitarist and an unsung hero in his own rite, gets credit for the album's cover art, while Band of Horses' Ben Bridwell joins Jaye for a campfire cover of the Jesus and Mary Chain's “Sometimes Always”) but has yet to amass a similar following. That's a shame, since songs like “Don't Tell a Girl” and “Sweet Ride” are almost aggressive in their tunefulness, with the former suggesting the glory days of Brill Building pop and the latter setting itself up as an old-fashioned drinking song. There are some pleasant diversions along the way, too; the mostly instrumental “Maru Maru” focuses the spotlight on Jaye's backup band, and the breezy ballad “Sweet Ride” is far more contemporary than the rest of the record. Even so, The Exotic Sounds of Courtney Jaye is mostly a vehicle for Jaye to create her own retro-leaning world, one in which the Laurel Canyon, Music City, and the Kaua'i coastline are just minutes apart.
"Blending the rhythms and slack-keyed guitars of the islands with country-politan arrangements, Jaye presents a sound that's both refreshing and vintage. The tracks are stacked with breezy pop melodies, lush instrumental textures and disarmingly sweet vocals that do more to channel the mod sirens of the '60s—with their giant eyelashes and come-hither grins—than any guitar-toting beach-bums she might have stumbled upon strung out in the sands of Kaua'i."
Ashley Melzer-Paste Magazine
"My feel good record...no matter where I am, when I Iisten to it, its 75 and sunny in my mind."
- Nathan Followill/Kings of Leon
"What to say about Courtney Jaye. The Exotic Sounds and lovely twang. She's your last best friend, telling you why."
- Peter Hayes/Black Rebel Motorcycle Club
"Mike Farris has enough heart, soul, and power to light up a city. He mixes up the elements and turns them into something new, beautiful, and uniquely his own."
"Mike’s set was truly dynamic and one of the most thrilling and audacious performances I’ve seen in a long time. His show will be remembered as one of the great highlights of the convention."
--Tim Kolleth Alligator Records
"Sometimes you have to go through hell to reach heaven, & watching Mike Farris perform songs off "Salvation In Lights" with a full band, I’d have to think someone earned his wings. Fantastic Show bordering on a religious experience."
--Larry Timko, WIKX
"I’m so glad I saw Mike. I have spent countless hours in the gospel tent at Jazz Fest listening to hardcore black gospel from all over the south and he has the same vibe."
--Jim Manion, WFHB, Bloomington
If Mike brings this ensemble on the road to a town near you,you had better go because you WILL NOT be disappointed,I guarantee it !!!"
-- Big Kev Ploghoft, WXLV, Schnecksville, PA
Bobby Bare Jr.
Nominated for a grammy at the age of 6 years old for a duet with his dad called "daddy what if"-written by Shel Silverstein - has a degree in psychology from the UNIVERSITY OF TENNESSEE - is VERY afraid of elves - made 2 albums for Immortal Records with his band BARE JR. one for sony records in 1998 and one for virgin records in 2001- born in Nashville, TN june 28, 1966- has 2 children -- believes that blue is a flavor and not a color nor a feeling--- has made 3 albums and 1 ep for BLOODSHOT RECORDS since 2003- co-produced his dad's last record THE MOON WAS BLUE in 2006- grew up in HENDERSONVILLE, TN with George Jones and Tammy Wynette as his next door neighbors- is only making music in the hopes of getting one step closer to his ultimate dream of being STEVEN PATRICK MORRISSEY'S personal bicycle mechanic- has toured with- DR. DOG, THE WALKMEN, THE DECEMBERISTS, THE BLACK CROWES, BOB DYLAN, AREOSMITH, MY MORNING JACKET, CENTRO-MATIC, THE BOTTEL ROCKETS, THE DRIVE BY TRUCKERS, ANDREW BIRD, and THE OLD 97's has been romantically linked to the BOB'S BIG BOY boy- in June of 2007 Bobby was asked by a casting company to audition for the role of "Shrek" for "Shrek the Musical" on Broadway- is on HOUSTON PARTY RECORDS in spain and HAZELWOOD RECORDS in germany- did a family album of all SHEL SILVERSTEIN songs called "SINGIN' IN THE KITCHEN" in 1975- can NOT speak mandrin chinese- had all his songs critiqued by SHEL SILVERSTEIN till shel died in may of 1999- sang on the song "getting back into you" on THE SILVER JEWS album "TANGLEWOOD NUMBERS"- sang on the song "horses" on WILL OLDHAMS' album "bonnie prince billie sings Greatest Palace Music"-------------------------------
Portland OR | Alternative
There is nothing like the challenges and camaraderie of the road to inspire a songwriter who thrives upon the emotional energy and exhilaration only travel can deliver. Some singers are devoted to the pursuit of perpetual motion, and Langhorne Slim releases his wild soul in ways that come out of the discipline of live performance.
The 13 songs that compose Langhorne Slim & The Law's new "The Way We Move" are road-tested, rollicking and very rock 'n' rolling tunes that the songwriter perfected with his loyal band, and come out of the kind of good times and bad experiences that songwriters of Langhorne's lofty stature can turn into life-affirming rock 'n' roll. You could also call what Langhorne Slim does folk music, but then there's his sly, charming and open-hearted feel for pop music -- those summertime melodies that nudge you into a grin even when the song is about something bad.
For Langhorne Slim -- Pennsylvania-born self-taught guitarist who moves to Brooklyn at 18, begins feeling out his place in a burgeoning punk-folk scene, wends his way to the West Coast, and finds himself celebrated from Newport to Portland as one of today's most original singers and songwriters -- "The Way We Move" represents the sound of a band devoted to living in the moment. Riding the success of his 2009 full-length Be Set Free, Langhorne went through some changes over the last three years -- he lost his beloved grandfather, who is the subject of the new record's moving "Song for Sid," and moved on from a relationship that had lasted five years.
And there was the physical moving -- the literal side of the record's title. Pulling up stakes from his home of two years, Portland, Ore., Langhorne also has been touring non-stop with The Law. As he says, "I'm in a bit of a transitional period -- currently, the road will be home. That's just kind of my spirit, to be slightly restless." Perfecting their rangy sound out on the endless grey ribbon, Langhorne and The Law -- bassist Jeff Ratner, drummer Malachi DeLorenzo and banjo player and keyboardist David Moore -- went down to rural Texas in the summer of 2011 to work on new material. With some 30 tunes to consider, the quartet soaked up the Lone Star sunshine and developed arrangements and approaches for Langhorne's latest batch of songs.
Jeff Ratner had joined the group at the time of Be Set Free, and brought on multi-instrumentalist David Moore not long after. Moore and Ratner go way back, having moved to New York around the same time, and they've played together in what Jeff estimates are 15 bands. Langhorne's association with Malachi is equally deep. As the group played together through tours with the Drive-By Truckers and the Avett Brothers, and made appearances at the Newport Folk Festival and Bonnaroo, their bond became ever stronger, their music more confident. This is what you hear on "The Way We Move" -- forward motion meeting deep cohesion, all in the service of Langhorne's amazing songs and compelling vocals.
"We wanted Langhorne's songs to shine, and be as raw as the creatures that we are," Jeff says of the recording process. The band set up in the Catskill, N.Y. Old Soul Studio, a 100-year-old Greek Revival house retooled for recording. With studio owner Kenny Siegal co-producing, Langhorne & The Law fearlessly ran through an astounding 26 songs in four days, with Langhorne putting finishing touches on new tunes as they recorded. Langhorne says it was an intimate affair in Old Soul, with Moore's "banjo room" in a coatroom and the piano in the living room.
It comes through on "The Way We Move" -- the live feel of the sessions, which found Langhorne singing along with the band on every track. "Singing with the band that way, it's almost like I was performing on stage," he says. Cutting everything live to tape gave the band exactly what they'd been looking for: a super-charged evocation of their raucous, friendly stage performances. Langhorne and Jeff value in music for its rawness, and it doesn't matter whether that rawness -- the insurgent spirit that unites the Clash and Charlie Poole -- comes from in punk, country, soul or folk. Langhorne is a fan of Porter Wagoner, Jimmie Rodgers, Waylon Jennings, and early rock 'n' roll in general. But there's nothing referential or detached about the music Langhorne & The Law make. Langhorne writes songs that are yearning, sad, happy, defeated and optimistic, with hints of '50s rock 'n' roll balladry.
"We all love Wu-Tang Clan as much as we love Bowie, or Brazilian psychedelic pop," Langhorne says. On "The Way We Move," David's probing piano often provides focus for Langhorne's tales of love and loss. "On the Attack" begins with a delicate, watercolor section that turns into an ingenious variation on a classic soul ballad -- Solomon Burke meets punk blues in a smoky folk club. Langhorne addresses it to a current or past love. Similarly, "Past Lives" sports a piano introduction that gives way to a melancholy 6/8 ballad that perfectly supports lyrics about possible past lives and their interaction with the present.
It's a spirited, inspired slice of real rock 'n' roll -- exuberance meets hard-won experience in an explosive combination. David's banjo and Malachi's walloping drums add up to a new kind of folk music. The music drives, but there's no loss of subtlety. And when the group lays into the garage-rocking "Fire," with its funky electric piano and supremely callow lyrics about first kisses and the hot-burning passions of adolescence, it's clear Langhorne is one of the great rock 'n' rollers of our or any time.
Road-tested as the band is, the new music also shows just how far Langhorne Slim has come as a singer. He croons, exults and sings the blues throughout "The Way We Move." And there are his lyrics, which are about strange dreams featuring women who want him dead even as he desires them, the pressures of small-town life, ambition, and how much he appreciates his mother's love and support. That's all Langhorne and his life -- his mother, he says, really was amazingly supportive of his ambitions to become a musician, as was the rest of his family.
It comes through as you listen to his virtuoso demonstration of a singing style that seems alive to every fleeting emotional shade of meaning. Langhorne puts you in mind of John Lennon's singing from time to time -- it's nothing exact, and Slim doesn't do much music that is very Lennon- or Beatle-esque, but it's something in the timbre, and the openness of his vocals. It's worth repeating here that Langhorne learned Nirvana songs as he began to explore the guitar and songwriting, and Kurt Cobain's intense singing is another reference point.
But these guys don't play the reference game, and like to keep it raw. The new record moves in ways that are fresh for Langhorne Slim & The Law, and demonstrates all the ways we can go forward while keeping an eye on the mirror. They're laying down the law. It's very American, and when Langhorne Slim contemplates whether or not he fits in to any narrow-cast definition of this country's music, he replies with a perfect, laconic joke: "I think we fit in most places that would take us."
Memphis TN | Rock
Cory Branan is a natural-born storyteller. As with any of his
musical and literary pedestal sitters, from John Prine and
Leonard Cohen to Raymond Carver and Márquez, his seemingly
conversational, painstakingly crafted anecdotes benefit from a
hard-eyed stare at hydra-headed experience.
MUTT—Branan’s Bloodshot debut—also bears the marks of his “American gumbo” heritage: a winding path from nascent guitar shredder in the small, state-line town of Southaven, Mississippi, to fledgling troubadour in Memphis’ lauded underground music scene, and now a Nashville-based itinerant road warrior thrilling Thunderdomes as varied as Warp’s Country Throwdown and Chuck Ragan’s Revival Tour. While his music tips its hat to road-map influences from Motown to Mellencamp, the Delta bluesmen to folk pickers of ’60s Greenwich Village, the united result is a singular sound spurred on by years spent on tour honing something rare that is altogether its own.
Anchor Thieves is a three-piece alternative rock band from Nashville, Tenn. Initially formed as Homework, the group set out to recreate and perform home recordings of singer/ guitarist Cayce Keller. These songs with minimalist arrangements, buried harmonies and undeniable hooks served as an ideal starting point. The band remains rooted in solid pop songwriting and familiar fuzzy guitar tones, but new material flirts with a broader array of styles. Songs now also exhibit more ambitious structures and thicker arrangements. If you listen carefully, you might even detect a cautious optimism for the future of creative melody-driven rock 'n' roll.
Magnolia Sons is a nostalgic rock and soul group based out of Nashville, Tennessee. They are a 12-piece supergroup composed of artists and musicians from all over the United States. Their music is a tribute to the vintage sound of classic rock and soul from the 1960's and 1970's created by writers Austin Aguirre and Benjamin A. Harper. In the time of the resurgence of record collections, Magnolia Sons is both a throwback and a breath of fresh air. Inspired by The Supremes, Stevie Wonder, The Four Tops and the Temptations, Magnolia Sons have a sound that harkens back to the sound of 60's soulsters and American Band Stand, and as a 12 piece, they definitely fit the retro profile. While many older fans will recognize the sound from their own record collections, it is new for many of their younger fans who can be found dancing along to the catchy tunes at many of Nashville's venues.